Report: Drunk man nearly drives away with 12-year-old after carjacking, wrecks

BCSO dash cam video of man crashing into vehicles in Sangaree
Picture from dash cam video of the incident. (Source: BCSO)
Picture from dash cam video of the incident. (Source: BCSO)

BERKELEY COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Deputies say an intoxicated Ladson man was arrested after he crashed a stolen truck into several vehicles then stole another vehicle with a 12-year-old child inside.

The Berkeley County Sheriff's Office charged 32-year-old Jonathan Wilmer Venable of Ladson with two counts of leaving the scene of a crash and driving under the influence for the Monday afternoon incident in Sangaree.

The whole thing started shortly after 5 p.m. when a deputy patrolling the area of Highway 17-A and Myers Road saw a F-150 truck disregard a stop light and cut across the intersection. 

Authorities said the truck's actions caused several vehicles to stop to avoid being struck.

"The F-150 then used the turn lane to pass several vehicles and struck several traffic cones in the process," BCSO officials said.

Authorities say the deputy in the area activated his emergency equipment in order to get the truck to stop.

"The truck had a good lead on the deputy and traffic was thick," BCSO officials stated in a Facebook post."The deputy lost sight of the truck as he continued on Highway 17-A in an attempt to locate the F-150. At some point, it was learned that the F-150 was stolen."

The deputy said when he got to Long Street, just past Royle Road, he saw a lot of dust and the remains of several vehicles including the F-150.

A report states that the F-150 had struck several vehicles and disabled them in addition to becoming disabled itself.

When the deputy approached the scene a Chevrolet Tahoe SUV sped off.

The sheriff's office says the suspect had forcibly taken the Tahoe and tried to get away.

Authorities said the owner of the Tahoe had stopped to render aid to the crash victims.

"The Tahoe's owner attempted to extract the suspect from the Tahoe but was unable to do so," BCSO officials said."Another citizen saw the situation in the Tahoe and also saw the owner's 12-year-old that was still in the Tahoe. The second citizen opened the door and was able to get the 12-year-old out of the Tahoe before it sped off."

The deputy then attempted to stop the Tahoe but it refused to stop.

After a very brief period, BCSO officials said the Tahoe ran a red light and struck three more vehicles and then a telephone pole.

"The deputy was able to take the driver of the Tahoe into custody with the assistance of an off-duty deputy that was nearby," authorities said.

Venable was locked up at the Hill Finklea Detention Center.

According to the sheriff's office, there were no significant injuries in the crash but there was significant property loss.

Authorities say additional charges are pending related to the possession of a stolen vehicle and carjacking.

The SCHP is investigating the crashes.

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